National Archives and Records AdministrationARC Identifier 2569715 / Local Identifier 111-TV-456Big Picture: Operation DiscoveryBasic training to graduation is theme for new "THE BIG PICTURE" -- "Operation Discovery" depicts the life of a young soldier from induction into the modern Army until his ultimate "graduation" from basic. During the course of the film, he "discovers" the why and wherefore of his obligated peacetime service. Eddy Manson, one of this country's top harmonica virtuosos, is featured in this film in an impromptu rendition of "The Ballad of Roger Young" together with Jake Moon, guitarist and ballad singer. Manson, who journeyed to Moscow with Ed Sullivan, is a recording artist and has performed on many television programs. He's generally rated as one of the best in his field. The Roger Young ballad, which is used throughout the film, was written by Frank Loesser who was stationed at the Army Pictorial Center in Long Island City, New York, during World War II as an enlisted man. One of the few songs to survive the war days, it tells of the Ohio-born infantryman who died in the Solomon Islands fighting while heroically saving the lives of others. Except for Manson, Moon, and several other "professionals," service personnel were used in the picture. Among these were Maj. Gen. Sidney Wooten, Commanding General of Fort Dix, New Jersey; a company and battalion commander of the training regiment there; and Fort Dix enlisted men. Much of the footage was shot at the New Jersey post also.
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